Author Interview: Craig Comer

Today I’m interviewing author, Craig Comer, as part of the blog tour for his new book The Laird of Duncairn. check it out below!

What inspired you to become a writer?
I’ve always loved dreaming up stories, whether from the places I’ve travelled or from the people I’ve encountered. From an early age, as an avid reader, I’d start wrestling with how a book’s plot might be different or how a character might’ve reacted a different way. That spawned quickly into concocting my own tales. As an adult, I fit well into the category of, “I write because I can’t stop!”

Do you write every day?
I try to, in one format or another. When working on the novel, it became oddly easier—I just needed to push the story further each day. Now, I need to balance writing book II in the series along with all the marketing for book I. And, of course, there are other projects I have cooking.

Is there any romance in your story, and if so can you tell us a little about this?
The story focuses mainly on the adventure and mystery aspects, but yes, there are some romantic moments. I purposefully didn’t want the classic romantic triangle, at least not from the first page. I don’t think that just because the protagonist is female that she automatically needs a love interest. That said, I do have greater relationships planned for future books of the series. So the overall series will be a slow build in that regard.

Can you give us a little insight into any characters in your latest book?
Effie is an orphaned Sithling—someone with both fey and human blood, and her kind are hunted by a government who has used propaganda to ostracize them from society. So she has instant adversity and enemies, but as an orphan, she doesn’t really know much about her own people, nor whom to trust. She’s curious to a fault, and it’s that conflict between her need for understanding and her need to remain safely hidden that drives her actions.

What is the time period setting of your latest book?
It is set in Scotland during the 1880’s. It’s a time when society was pushing back against some of the horrible working conditions of the industrial revolution. At the same time, empires were growing larger and starting to boil over, and the search for a replacement to coal-powered machines had begun.

Do you prefer to write a series or one-off books?
A little of both. A series is appealing because you get to introduce so much detail that you can hint to the reader and flush out in later volumes. Plus, as the author, you can invest yourself in the characters so much more. But on the flip side, standalone books offer the ability to tackle different genres and settings that might not be possible in an on-going series.

Do you like to use lots of subplots, or do you think they just confuse?
I think you need subplots, even if they’re never shoved directly in the spotlight. Life is complex, and for me, I enjoy reading that which mirrors that complexity. Everyone is the hero of their own story, and so side characters should never stand around idly watching the main character. They have goals to obtain and shopping to do!

Can you tell us a little about your protagonist and your antagonist and how they relate to each other?
I spoke about Effie, the heroine, above. Her adversaries include some greedy coal barons, a cult of fey hunters, and a renowned geologist. But her true antagonist, in the literary sense, is an ancient fey who re-emerges and seeks to wrest back the power he once held. He views the other fey as his natural allies and Effie’s viewpoint as a form of betrayal. This creates tension between them as they battle wits.

How do you think you would feel if you received a really bad review that seemed justified?
Bad is subjective when it comes to reviews. And so is good. I’ve had high-rated reviews in the past that commented on things that didn’t happen in the book, and I’ve also had low-rated reviews where the reviewer complained about the genre of the book in general terms. So I try to take each review as constructive and look for patterns in the feedback rather than react too much over one person’s opinion.

Do you think all readers should do reviews to help the writers improve?
That’s a good question. I think that’d be a lot to ask, and while reviews can be helpful to the writer, I feel they should be more geared toward helping other readers find the books they like. Writers have other places they can garner feedback—writing groups, forums, and conferences.

About the Book

Title: The Laird of Duncairn

Author: Craig Comer

Genre: Gaslamp Fantasy

The year is 1882 Scotland, and the auld alliance betwixt king and fey has long been forgotten. Men of science, backed by barons of industry, push the boundaries of technology. When Sir Walter Conrad discovers a new energy source, one that could topple nations and revolutionize society, the race to dominate its ownership begins. But the excavation and use of this energy source will have dire consequences for both humans and fey. For an ancient enemy stirs, awakened by Sir Walter’s discovery.

Outcast half-fey Effie of Glen Coe is the Empire’s only hope at averting the oncoming disaster. Effie finds herself embroiled in the conflict, investigating the eldritch evil spreading throughout the Highlands. As she struggles against the greed of mighty lords and to escape the clutches of the queen’s minions, her comfortable world is shattered. Racing to thwart the growing menace, she realizes the only thing that can save them all is a truce no one wants.

Craig Comer is the author of the gaslamp fantasy novel THE LAIRD OF DUNCAIRN and co-author of the mosaic fantasy novel THE ROADS TO BALDAIRN MOTTE. His shorter works have appeared in several anthologies, including BARDIC TALES AND SAGE ADVICE and PULP EMPIRE VOLUME IV. Craig earned a Master’s Degree in Writing from the University of Southern California. He enjoys tramping across countries in his spare time, preferably those strewn with pubs and castles.

About the Author

 

Craig Comer is the author of the gaslamp fantasy novel THE LAIRD OF DUNCAIRN and co-author of the mosaic fantasy novel THE ROADS TO BALDAIRN MOTTE. His shorter works have appeared in several anthologies, including BARDIC TALES AND SAGE ADVICE and PULP EMPIRE VOLUME IV. Craig earned a Master’s Degree in Writing from the University of Southern California. He enjoys tramping across countries in his spare time, preferably those strewn with pubs and castles.

 

LINKS:

https://craigcomer.com/

https://www.amazon.com/Laird-Duncairn-Fey-Matter/dp/1944728163

https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/the-laird-of-duncairn/id1219867674

https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/the-laird-of-duncairn

https://www.facebook.com/craigscomer/

https://twitter.com/CraigComer

 

About Tiffany Shand

2 thoughts on “Author Interview: Craig Comer

  • 26/05/2017 at 11:04 pm
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    I completely agree with Craig in regard to subplots. Having a too linear story never really appeals to me either.
    Enjoyed reading this interview! 🙂

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